Footwear and sports apparel giant Nike secured a trademark for “CRYPTOKICKS” and alluded to its intent to pursue a wide array of blockchain-related services.
On Apr. 19th Nike filed a trademark for the word mark “CRYPTOKICKS” with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for use in a wide array of cryptocurrency-related goods and services. The registration is currently live.
Nike has filed a trademark application for CRYPTOKICKS.
The filing indicates that Nike is intending to launch a cryptocurrency called CRYPTOKICKS.
Below is my analysis of the filing and its implications 👇#nike#cryptocurrency pic.twitter.com/82gAPlzrXy
— Josh Gerben (@JoshGerben) April 24, 2019
Background on Trademarks
According to the USPTO, a trademark is a word or symbol that identifies and differentiates the source of a good or service. Unlike patents and other intellectual property, registration for trademarks are not necessary for legal protection in the US so long as the mark is used actively in commerce.
However, registration allows a corporation—like Nike—to gain the legal presumption of ownership over the mark nationwide, as well as exclusive rights to use the mark in connection to the wide array of goods and services it designated in the filing.
Details on the CRYPTOKICKS Registration
Nike’s recent trademark alludes to several ventures the corporation is either currently pursuing or will pursue in the future.
In the filing, the company asserts the mark may be used for goods and services including—cryptocurrency software and hardware wallets, crypto-collectibles and art, utility tokens, and software for managing networked IoT devices.
Furthermore, the company also alludes to a mobile app Nike is developing with an associated coin:
“Downloadable computer software, namely, an electronic financial platform that accommodates multiple types of payment and debt transactions in an integrated mobile phone”
Not only that, but the registration also mentions that the corporation has the right to use the mark in association with an online crypto marketplace featuring footwear and clothing:
“Online marketplace services, namely, providing a marketplace for buyers and sellers of digital currency assets; Operating an online marketplace featuring footwear and clothing; on-line retail store services”
Corporations Stake Intellectual Property Claims
Nike is not the first company to stake a claim on crypto-related intellectual property. Companies ranging from Amazon, Mastercard, and Xerox have filed patents and other intellectual property claims within the blockchain industry.
The growth in patents among some of the world’s largest corporations could be a positive signal for growth and recognition of crypto. However, these intellectual property claims also contrast sharply with the open-source and censorship adverse community that bitcoin has kindled.
As the industry grows, corporations like Nike will find ways to commercialize blockchain technology and profit from the enthusiasm around the technology. At the moment, it’s unclear how these large businesses will clash with existing startups and decentralized organizations employing blockchain.
That said, one thing does seem to hold true—crypto is worth paying attention to.